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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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the Department.

“The Congress and the press are becoming increasingly critical of the poor administration of the H.E.W. and of its far-flung responsibilities. These critics argue that what is needed now are a few additional topflight officials who will guarantee a more efficient and economic operation of H.E.W., so that the American taxpayer can receive the maximum benefits from all the recent health and social welfare and educational legislation enacted.

“H.E.W., whose activities touch the life of virtually every American citizen in a direct and personal way, should be administered as efficiently and dynamically as the Department of Defense. It should be the department from which the main attack on poverty should be made, as health, and lack of it, affect the earning capacity of every citizen. So does education. And welfare programs protect the citizen from extreme poverty.”

Q:

Mrs. Lasker, what was the thinking that went into this?

Lasker:

Well, I realized that the programs for which we had been successful in getting additional funds weren't being well administered, in the health field, as well as they should. I knew there was need for more staffing at the top, because the top leadership wasn't numerous enough to take care of all the



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